Oppose Land Bill in RS, Jairam tells BJD

The former Union Minister and Congress leader terms the political war over the amendments to Land Bill as the ‘Mahabharata of 21 Century’

Updated - November 16, 2021 05:11 pm IST

Published - April 06, 2015 03:47 pm IST - BHUBANESWAR:

Jairam Ramesh on Land Bill: "BJP wants Ghar Wapsi, we want Kanoon Wapsi". File photo: Akhilesh Kumar

Jairam Ramesh on Land Bill: "BJP wants Ghar Wapsi, we want Kanoon Wapsi". File photo: Akhilesh Kumar

Former Union Minister and senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh on Monday appealed to the Biju Janata Dal to oppose in the Rajya Sabha to the Narendra Modi Government’s amendments in the Land Acquisition Act, 2013.

Terming the political war over the amendments as the ‘Mahabharata of 21 Century’, Mr. Ramesh said BJD president Naveen Patnaik should abandon the army of Kauravas led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and join the army of the Pandavas that the Congress represents.

Stating that Mahabharata was fought over land, Mr. Ramesh said termed the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (Amendment) Bill 2015 was “anti-farmer, anti-tribal and anti-democratic”.

“We are not depending on Naveen Patnaik to defeat the amendments in the Rajya Sabha, but we want Mr. Patnaik to stand up for farmers, tribals and democracy to make his stand clear,” he observed while addressing a press conference at the Congress Bhavan in Bhubaneswar.

The former Union Minister, who said that Congress will continue to oppose the amendments inside and outside Parliament, criticised Mr. Modi for carrying out the amendments to benefit some private companies that had invested in his election campaign.

Stating that the Congress wants the Land Acquisition Act, 2013 back which was passed after two years of consultations, Mr. Ramesh said “BJP wants Ghar Wapsi, we want Kanoon Wapsi”.

The Congress will organise a rally in New Delhi on April 19 to oppose the amendments in the land acquisition Act and re-promulgation of the land acquisition ordinance, he said.

Observing that by carrying out the amendments in the 2013 Act the Modi Government has opened the door for forcible land acquisition and take the country back to the colonial era, Mr. Ramesh said many parties such as the SP, BSP, JD(U), CPI(M), CPI, DMK, NCP and TMC are already supporting the Congress on the issue.

Responding to a query about the counter-offensive launched by the BJP on the land acquisition amendments, Mr. Ramesh said “BJP’s counter-offensive is based on lies and our offensive is based on facts”.

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